The day after Natalia Dron finished studying economics and accounting in Poland, she moved to Ireland with some friends. This may be where her passion for the color green started. After spending a few weeks enjoying Dublin, they moved to a small town nearby and Natalia began working her way up the management chain at McDonald’s. By the time she left this town, her hard work pushed her into an assistant manager role and she was unable to progress any further up the ladder at the store.
A self-proclaimed “high-energy person,” while working full-time at McDonald’s, she also cleaned the home of a family on her day off. Some day off! “That was the first house that I ever cleaned, where I learned everything, sometimes the hard way! But this was where I learned that I love cleaning. It is so satisfying to leave a place sparkling clean that was dirty,” said Natalia.
After six years of hard work at McDonald’s and cleaning homes, Natalia took a vacation to visit friends in the U.S. where she met her future husband at a 4th of July party (fireworks, swoon!) and decided to move permanently to Chicago. Her first jobs in the U.S. were all cleaning-related, and she launched her own cleaning service, Natalia Cleans, in 2012. At first, she worked alongside her husband, but one of their clients offered him a property management position and Natalia now relies on her team of four workers to help handle the demand. “We work as a team to go above and beyond in satisfying our customers,” Natalia said.
As you can see in the pictures, the team gets decked out in green t-shirts when they head out to work. “When I was just starting my business, the first thing that I chose was the color green,” said Natalia. “I wanted green for two reasons– that it’s a calming and relaxing color, and to indicate green cleaning. I love using green products that are safe for us workers who use them all day long, and also safe for customers, their children, pets, and the whole house.”
One of the things Natalia and her team most appreciate from clients is being treated well, from leaving their air conditioning on in the summer to offering cold drinks to quench their thirst on a hot day. “We don’t take the drinks, but it’s a very kind gesture,” Natalia clarified. This type of respect from clients is especially necessary in the scorching hot summers in Chicago.
Her secret green cleaning weapon should come as no surprise to those who know the power of vinegar. “It’s the best product. If I spray it on shower glass or around faucets, it does the job by itself and takes all the buildup away.” And she also enjoyed discovering a new tool on the market—an electric cleaning brush. “We love to use it! It saves us time and energy.”
It helps to have a role model when you’re getting started, and Natalia found hers in a friend of her mother-in-law’s, who owns her own cleaning business. “She gave me the courage, support, and all the tips when I needed it the most. She always has a good word for me.” As far as advice for anyone thinking about starting their own cleaning business, Natalia cautions that it’s hard work and you have to be better than everyone else to get ahead. “But it’s priceless when you get a satisfied customer. It’s worth the hard work! Especially when customers tell us that their house looks like new.”
When not cleaning or running her business, Natalia loves reading books, traveling, and seeing theater. She and her husband recently had a good laugh seeing “The Book of Mormon.” And to keep up her reading, Natalia’s sister sends her a package filled with dozens of books from Poland three or four times a year. It takes a lot to tire her out, but we’re confident that this high energy entrepreneur will continue to lead her business to dazzling success and sparkling clean homes. If you’re in the Chicago area and would like to book a house cleaning service with Natalia Cleans, check them out here.